We, Anne and Winfried, are a retired couple, who has always been interested in travelling.
From 1982 till 1989 we worked and lived with our four chidren, three daughters and one son, in Lisbon. Then we returned to our home in the Black Forest for 14 years. After that stay we went to Caracas, Venezuela, with our son , who was then 15 years old. Life there was rather difficult and dangerous, so we often dreamt of a peaceful life on our quinta in Portugal, which we had bought in 2001.
After our return from Venezuela we can now spend more time in Portugal, so we live half a year in Germany and half a year in Portugal.
Our children love spending some time on the quinta and we are constantly trying to improve the big garden and the house. As the family is growing in numbers- now three families of 4 members each and our son- we need more space to accommodate all of them. Therefore we are building a small house - we call it casita- down in the orchard. At the same time we are building a shed, where we can store the things, which cannot stay outside during the wet winter.
The quinta is rather big- 7500 sqm- with a parklike garden and a house with two apartments. There is an apartment ( 90 sqm), which has got four bedrooms, and another apartment ( 60 sqm), which is ideal for a couple and maybe a small child.This is where we normally live.
So the volunteers could stay in the this apartment.It has a fully equipped kitchen / living room with satellite tv and a glass-covered fireplace, which is sufficient to heat the whole room.
From the living room you can get out onto the terrace, which we call the sunken garden. There one can find a big marble table with stone benches and a barbecue.
From there you have a lovely view of the Lisbon coast at day and night and when the air is clear, you can even see the Sintra mountain range with its famous castle.
The volunteers can also use the small pool near the entrance gate. All over the quinta you can find quiet spaces , where you can sit down and read a book or enjoy a glass of Portuguese red wine, while watching the sun set behind the rolling hills.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
As we have led a life with many exciting experiences during our 17 years abroad, we are open to getting to know new people and normally we get along well with most of them. We have made the acquaintance of diverse cultures and we speak several languages: German, English,Portuguese,Spanish and French.
As it has already been mentioned, it takes a lot of work to keep the quinta going, to pick the weed, to build new little gardens and flower beds, to dug out bamboo roots and to help with the building of the two little houses.
As we have no regular gardener, we do most things on our own and there we would need some help. Our special project are the waterwise gardens, as we do not want to water large areas of the garden during the dry summer months . We are making various experiments in this area and although we have read a lot about this new field of gardening and have taken part in lectures about this subject, there is still a lot of trial and error.
You would have to work with pick, shovel and wheelbarrow and you would need clothes for work in the garden.
It´s also advisible to bring a windbreaker with you.
We expect volunteers to take up an insurance for accidents.
The volunteers would live in the an apartment with a fully equipped kitchen and living room, a bathroom and a bedroom. The apartment is totally separated from our apartment downstairs.
We would provide the food for the day and offer one warm home-made meal (either lunch or dinner) every day.
The volunteers can eat the fruits that are ripe in the corresponding season ( f.e. medlars, lemons, oranges and tangerines in spring, plums and apricots in summer and figs, apples, grapes in autumn)
The Setubal peninsula offers a lot of leisure activities . There are many different and interesting beaches on the north and south coast. You can either walk there or you can take the bus or go by our bike. The bus stop is 500 meters away. From there you can also get to Sesimbra, from where you can take the direct bus to Lisbon, where you can enjoy the attractions with the Lisbon card.
The organisation "Vertente Natural" offers all kinds of adventure activities (hikes, walks, canoeing, paraglidin, climbing and many others).
At Aldeia do Meco you can go horseback riding at the beach (13 min. away from the Quinta).
At the Lagoa de Albufeira you can practise windsurfing, kite-surfing and sailing and you can get lessons there as well.
We ourselves spend a lot of time in the garden, when the weather is fine. Sometimes we drive to the tip of the peninsula, where we enjoy the marvellous view and the bifanas they sell there. Or we spend some time in Sesimbra with its nice cafes and restaurants and its beach next to the town.
On Sundays we make longer trips, sometimes to Lisbon or even to Sintra.
The airport of Lisbon is 40 minutes away and we would pick up the volunteers there and take them back.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week